Seven students travel to Argentina for Cronkite’s first internship abroad program | Tech US News


Cronkite students who traveled to Argentina last summer came back with new ideas about the world and discovered different perspectives they couldn’t see from back home in the US.

The students visited the South American country as the first cohort of an internship abroad program implemented by Cronkite Global Initiatives and the Professional and Career Development teams at ASU’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication. The program allowed students to spend almost three months in the country doing global internships.

The students stayed in the country from May 16 to August 1.

Dr. Juan Mundel, Associate Professor and Director of Cronkite Global Initiatives, and Karen Bordeleau, Director of Career and Professional Development at Cronkite, co-created the program. Bordeleau said this was Cronkite’s first internship opportunity abroad.

“We wanted the students to be immersed in a country. We didn’t want them to just walk around and do the touristy stuff, we wanted them to actually live with families, learn the languages, understand and appreciate the culture and, just as importantly, work in the environment,” she said.

Bordeleau traveled to Europe as a high school student, a life-changing trip. “It opened my eyes to the world and I’ve been visiting and immersing myself in other countries ever since,” she said. “Cultural exposure is important for all students, for all humans.”

Mundel, a native of Argentina, previously led study abroad programs and took more than 200 American students abroad prior to his tenure at the Cronkite School.

He also studied abroad as a student. Mundel traveled to Ohio as a visiting student and taught Spanish while taking classes for a year. Now, he plans to use his love of global exposure to make Cronkite a world-class school.

“Doing an international internship allows students to gain cross-cultural and international skills that you wouldn’t otherwise get while here in Phoenix,” Mundel said.

Students who took the Argentina program studied at Blas Pascal University, which is where Mundel went to college in Argentina.

“I think it’s really improved my views as a person. I think being culturally appropriate and having a global perspective really adds layers to a person,” said Nick Elsner, a sports journalism major who took the trip as a sophomore.

Elsner worked as a marketing and business communications intern for Croppers, a healthy snack company in Cordoba. I lived with a host family in Argentina. This year, he plans to fly back to the country to spend New Year’s Eve with them. They will then vacation together next year as a family to begin the tradition of taking turns flying between the United States and Argentina each year.

“My host family was amazing. My boss and his wife ended up becoming a second host family. I was at his house every Sunday, grilling and eating asado with his whole family inside. ‘Asado’ is like his barbecue “, said.

Nicole Rossi, studying journalism, went to Argentina as her second study abroad experience.

“Studying abroad has always been a goal of mine. It’s very different to meet people who are from another country in your own country than to go to another country and be a foreigner,” said Rossi, who also works in the Cronkite Global Initiatives office.

Rossi said Argentina broadened his world view as he learned more Spanish and immersed himself in the culture. Travel is important to her because everything she studies as a journalism student is affected by global standards or will have an impact in that way.

She said it is helpful for students who are interested in studying abroad to talk to Mundel, Bordeleau, the CGI office or past students about these opportunities. “Just do your research,” he said.

Bordeleau agrees. “You really have to understand as much as you can about another culture before you immerse yourself in it,” he said.

Learning basic language concepts and reading about the country’s currency, politics, local news and geography are just some of the ways students should get used to their new home abroad.

“It’s going to be uncomfortable for the first two or three weeks. Then it becomes an incredible joy. That’s why I say do your research first. It mitigates some of that initial discomfort,” he said.

Elsner believes this level of exposure is invaluable because it produces professionals who understand other cultures. He said it is not only necessary, but required.

“I would say 100% that it should be mandatory for people to study abroad. Having a global perspective is invaluable,” he said.

This internship fulfilled the JMC484 credit required for graduation. Bordeleau said she and Mundel are already planning other internship opportunities abroad for Cronkite students.

“Now the plan is to expand to different parts of the world,” he said.

Many countries will be available next year through ASU’s main study abroad office.

“It’s really cool for me to be able to understand others because we’re all people. We all breathe the same air, we all bleed the same blood. The only thing that’s different is that they live in a different part of the world,” Elsner said.

For more information about Cronkite Global Initiatives, contact Juan Mundel at [email protected] or visit


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